by Rob Gaston, November 12, 2015

Apple Goat salad

Local apples and beets, arugula, goat cheese, sliced almonds and pomegranate vinaigrette

As promised, we went back to Bent Rail Brewery to check out the new seasonal selections Craig Baker had put on his menu. We found this delightful salad with our #INseason ingredient apples. And this seasonal salad which was too pretty not to post:

Bent Rail Salad

Kale, spinach, carrots, cabbage, squash, and pumpkin seeds with avocado vinaigrette

It just so happens Baker was recently returned from the World Food Championships, along with fellow chef Cindy Hawkins. Hawkins, head of Circle City Sweets and instructor at Ivy Tech Community College, provides a tasty dessert each year at the Taste of Indiana festival. Unlike Baker, who has competed three times, Hawkins was attending this competition for the first time, and just happened to feature apples in one of her entries.

Caramel Apple Tart: sweet tart shell with granny smith apples, cinnamon mousse, candied pecans, accented with vanilla bean.

Caramel Apple Tart: sweet tart shell with granny smith apples, cinnamon mousse, candied pecans, accented with vanilla bean.

Hawkins felt pushed outside her comfort zone, enjoyed going through the practice and training to compete, and is inspired to compete again. We want to thank Dig IN partners Maple Leaf Farms and Ivy Tech Community College for being among the sponsors who helped these chefs get down to Kissimmee, FL.

With a laugh, Chef Hawkins told us that her first entry at the competition had to be a cupcake, as she is known for her general dislike of them. So we’ll leave you with a photo of her cupcake creation. Looks pretty good to us, chef!

Cupcake with a coconut passionfruit curd, cream cheese, and whipped cream.

Cupcake with a coconut passionfruit curd, cream cheese, and whipped cream.

Latest posts by Rob (see all)